The new Tier 4 restrictions for London, the south-east and east of England –announced by prime minister Boris Johnson on Saturday, 19 December – have meant that planned outdoor events in affected areas previously designated Tier 3 have had to be cancelled.
Under Tier 3 regulations events such as drive-ins and outdoor ice skating were able to take place but the move to Tier 4 for much of the South East means that any hope that the outdoor events industry could stage events during the Christmas holidays in the affected areas has been extinguished.
Among the impacted events are Strawberry Moon Cinema’s drive-in film season, which was due to start at Royal Windsor Racecourse on 19 December, and MyCinema in Milton Keynes. Meanwhile, the Arena Group has been forced to suspend use of its ice-skating rinks at Hampton Court Palace (pictured) and Queens House Greenwich.
From the beginning of Sunday, 20 December, the following areas were moved into Tier 4: London (All 32 London boroughs plus City of London), Kent and Medway, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire (Bracknell Forest, Reading, Slough, Wokingham, Windsor and Maidenhead and West Berkshire), Surrey (excluding Waverley), Hastings and Rother, Havant, Gosport and Portsmouth, Hertfordshire, Essex (excluding Tendring, Uttlesford and Colchester), Central Bedfordshire, Bedford, Milton Keynes, Luton and Peterborough.
Among the businesses that must close are entertainment venues such as theatres, concert halls, cinemas, museums and galleries, skating rinks and fairgrounds. Those permitted to stay open include market stalls, selling essential retail, outdoor gyms, pools, sports courts and facilities, and golf courses.
Full guidance can be found here.